Roku Thinks Cable and Satellite Will Be (Almost) Dead by 2024

 In GDI, USA, Information

Roku dom­i­nates stream­ing device sales for many rea­sons. Ease of use, the sheer amount of apps a user can down­load as well as the sheer amount of free con­tent com­bined with amaz­ing pic­ture and sound qual­i­ty make for a prod­uct that is what I con­sid­er to be the gold-stan­dard of stream­ing play­ers. When many people think of stream­ing — con­sid­er­ing how it is now the oper­at­ing system of many TVs thanks to part­ner­ships with TCL, JVC, Sharp and others — they think Roku. Such brand recog­ni­tion is invalu­able.

And the future, at least accord­ing to Roku, could not be any brighter. In a letter to share­hold­ers yes­ter­day, Roku declared that “by 2024 rough­ly half of all U.S. TV house­holds will have cut the cord or never had tra­di­tion­al pay-TV.”

Wow, just wow.

That should make exec­u­tives in com­pa­nies like Comcast, Verizon, Dish Network and other tra­di­tion­al cable and satel­lite providers break out into a cold sweat.

Cable and satel­lite com­pa­nies for years now have seen a mas­sive decline in over­all rev­enue and prof­its as sub­scribers have increas­ing­ly left their ser­vices for stream­ing giants like Netflix and looked increas­ing­ly to other plat­forms that can emu­late cable, like YouTube TV.

But could Roku be exag­ger­at­ing just a little bit? Is such mas­sive growth truly pos­si­ble? What the com­pa­ny is pre­dict­ing would essen­tial­ly mean the near-death of cable TV, with many jobs lost with the pay-TV indus­try changed for­ev­er. Will that many people really cut the cord?

Honestly, I would say the answer is yes. The cable indus­try, which I have seen up close, is not very adept at adapt­ing to change or new chal­lengers. Also, there is a gen­er­a­tional shift in how people watch, engage and look for TV as well as over­all video con­tent. Millennials and Generation Z con­sume infor­ma­tion in an era where smart­phones and stream­ing are the first choice for view­ing almost any­thing. To them, cable is the equiv­a­lent of the VHS tapes indus­try — it’s part of the past.

That can only mean an incred­i­bly bright future for Roku and other stream­ing ser­vice gate­keep­ers- — those who pro­vide the entry point for seeing and view­ing such con­tent. Factor in the number of people who will switch to stream­ing exclu­sive­ly and the number of stream­ing ser­vices cur­rent­ly offered, as well as those that might exist in the future, and it seems like cable TV’s future is look­ing pretty grim indeed.

Harry J. Kazianis serves as a Senior Director at the Center for the National Interest and Executive Editor of their pub­lish­ing arm, the National Interest. In the past, Harry served as Editor-In-Chief of The Diplomat and was a part of the for­eign policy advi­so­ry team of U.S. Senator Ted Cruz’s 02016 U.S. Presidential Campaign.  His work and ideas have appeared in The New York Times, The Washington Post, CNN, Fox News, CNBC, USA Today, The Week, The Hill, the American Conservative and many other out­lets across the polit­i­cal spec­trum. Harry enjoys writ­ing about tech­nol­o­gy issues and prod­ucts from a real-world per­spec­tive, having pre­vi­ous­ly worked in the telecom­mu­ni­ca­tions indus­try from 2000 – 2011. You can follow him (or yell at him) on Twitter: @Grecianformula.

Image: Reuters.

Source: National Interest

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